Use COVID-19 fund wisely -- Lacson

March 22, 2020

SENATOR Panfilo Lacson yesterday reminded officials of the local government and other government agencies on the proper use of COVID 19 fund.

“Pagdating sa implementor sa baba, COVID ito baka mamaya haluan ng KUPIT. E wala nang konsensya ang mga ganoon. Isipin mo narito tayo nagkakamatay ang kababayan natin nagugutom pa ang iba maski walang sakit,” said Lacson.

“Pero tapos makakaisip ka pang mangupit sa ibibigay na pondo ng gobyerno? Yan walang karapatan mabuhay sa mundo siguro yan, pardon the word pero dapat yan nasa impyerno na. Kasi wala na talaga, wala nang kaluluwa ang ganoong tao,” he added.

“Under normal circumstances, minsan pinipikit-pikit at tinatawanan natin minsan kinakantyawan na lang natin. Pero kung ganito na ang usapan, nagkakagutom ang iba at nagkakasakit ang iba, at hindi pa alam, unknown nga ang kalaban natin. Ang pinakamahirap na giyera di mo alam ano kalaban mo o sino kalaban mo. Ito di pa natin alam kasi unknown, wala pang cure,” Lacson further said.

Meanwhile, the senator believes that the projected P200 billion budget to address the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) health emergency will not be enough to sustain affected families in the country.

Lacson said the proposed supplemental budget will only cover assistance to 16.5 million families and 30% of the minimum wage for affected workers for two months.

"Maliit talaga yun. Hindi ito makasasapat. Pangkain lang," Lacson said.

One possible source is the unused appropriations from the 2019 budget as he explained that as of the third quarter of last year, there is at least P989 billion unused money from various departments in the executive branch. 

Other funds that can be tapped are the local revenues and the internal revenue allotment (IRA) of local government units (LGUs)

The lawmaker also said Congress may amend RA 10121 or the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010 to amend the provision setting aside 5% of an LGUs estimated revenues for disaster risk management activities.